If you’ve followed Saturday Night Live for any number of years, you know that they rely on popular, funny, returning guest hosts and the anticipation that these hosts bring. Last weekend saw former regular Tracy Morgan return to the show. He was a regular cast member from (1996-2003) and a recent, nearly fatal accident and subsequent recovery made his return all the more poignant.
I am a big advocate for the idea that each of us is the protagonist, or hero, in our own story. But is it equally true that each of us is the host of our own variety show that goes on every day, 24/7, with golden opportunities not just for humor but also for poignancy, triumph, pain and learning. Perhaps, on Saturday night (or once a week in my office, if you’re my client) we might take a look at the key events from the previous week, much like SNL, and ask ourselves: what was important last week and what might we learn from what happened?
Such a metaphor brings with it an opportunity to examine our own lives. SNL often explores current themes such as politics and scandals du jour. If your week was covered on Saturday Night Live, what would be the key events that would be parodied? Keep in mind, I’m not suggesting that your life is all fun and games, even though finding humor can be a key coping skill. Obviously we all have tragedies and struggles in our life, and oftentimes there is nothing funny about what we are going through, especially if the events have brought us to psychotherapy. So, for the purposes of this exercise, choose one, two, or three key events from the past week and ask yourself the following questions about each event you have chosen:
Mike McMahan, LPC is a psychotherapist in private practice in San Antonio, Texas.
Therapy Goes POP
Perspectives on therapy and mental health as viewed through the lens of popular culture